Tuesday, June 10, 2014

Restoration of the Jennie Wade

Ted Jones takes a break with Bill Reed

A lot of visitors to Rivertowne Marina must wonder what is going on with the Jennie Wade. Don Jones, Rivertowne Marina owner, purchased the Jennie Wade and moved her from the Clermont County Chilo Park to her new home at the marina. (You can read more about the history of the boat by clicking on the tab at the top of this page). 

Don's brother, Ted, has taken on the daunting task of restoring the boat and repurposing her for her latest role. The Jennie Wade will serve a dual purpose at the marina. The lower deck will be converted to a small Ship's Store, carrying ice, drinks, snacks and Rivertowne Marina clothing and accessories. The top deck will provide a great setting for members to enjoy an "up close and personal" view of the ramp as boats are launched for a great day on the river. 

Ted has been working diligently to remove rust, prime, paint and restore this wonderful boat. He is currently working on the lower deck, adding insulation wainscoting and a new ceiling. The signs are requiring quite a bit of repair, as the wood base split over the years and needed to be resecured to the structure. 

No final timeline for completion has been established as Ted works to get her ready. Stop by and take a look at the progress when you come for the Boater Appreciation Day celebration Saturday, June 14th, from noon - 4:00. It's going to be a great summer!

Friday, November 1, 2013

First Annual Boater Appreciation Day at Rivertowne

October 19th was an unseasonably cold day for the First Annual Boater Appreciation Day at Rivertowne. Those who braved the elements, however, were not disappointed.

Don Jones took the opportunity to introduce the Jennie Wade to the attendees. You can read all about her history by clicking on the tab at the top of the page. By spring, the Jennie Wade should be a place where boaters will be able to purchase ice and light refreshments and watch their boats being launched and retrieved from the deck of the sternwheeler. There is quite a bit of excitement to be had in watching all of the hustle and bustle in a marina on a great boating day.

Captain Don raffled off several shirts commemorating the Jennie Wade to attendees. Bill Manis and other members of the Rivertowne crew attended to the grill and ensured that no one went hungry. As this boating season comes to an end, we look forward to the spring and the changes to the marina that should make 2014 the best year yet.

Wednesday, September 18, 2013

The Jennie Wade Sternwheeler Gets a New Home

On September 9th, 2013 the Jennie Wade Sternwheeler began a new adventure. She was acquired by Captain Don Jones, new owner of the Rivertowne Marina in Cincinnati, Ohio. For the past ten years, the Jennie Wade has been used to educate both young and old as part of the Clermont County Chilo Lock 34 Park. You can read all about her restoration and previous uses by clicking on the tab at the top of this page called "History of the Boat."

We arrived at Chilo Lock 34 Park early on September 17th -- a perfect September morning. Since the Jennie Wade does not have an engine, Chris Tucker was going to guide her to her new home using his tow boat.

Chris Tucker
The next task was to launch the Jennie Wade. Park personnel had to trim a few tree limbs to allow the boat to be moved to the launch ramp. She had not been in the water for ten years, so there was a little bit of anticipation as she floated from the trailer. The launch ended up being uneventful. We were notified, however, that our trip would be delayed as a barge was just about to be locked through the Meldahl Dam and we would have to wait until the lock was clear to begin our adventure.

Everyone on board, including her previous owners Wayne and Bev McClain, was impatient with anticipation. So Chris Tucker moved her from the dock and we were all impressed with her apparent seaworthiness and stability on the water. With the lock free, we were on our way.

Captain Don Jones 

As you can see, the five-hour cruise from Chilo to Cincinnati involved a lot of hard work.

Chris Tucker and Don Jones

So here is to new beginnings ... stay tuned to see how the Jennie Wade adapts to her new life bringing joy and excitement to all who see her.